Epidemiology Versus Dermatology

, , , , , | Right | September 25, 2020

We are in a pretty well-known chocolate store in a mall just browsing around while waiting for something to be made.

A lady, around fifty, walks in and the worker behind the counter offers her hand sanitizer due to the current health situation. I notice this lady is also not wearing a mask. She then starts to complain and go off at the worker stating.

Customer: “Ah, all you people with your hand sanitizer. Don’t you know how bad this is for your skin?”

I just turn around and do the dismissive hand gesture and continue browsing.

Customer: “Well, screw you, too.”

I don’t acknowledge this and continue browsing, at which point she shouts a little louder.

Customer: “Screw you, too!”

She stormed out the shop. I am sooo sorry that a little hand sanitizer is going to be bad for your skin.

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Tic-ing Along Nicely Until You Came Along, Part 2

, , , , , , | Friendly | September 25, 2020

This takes place right at the start of the current health crisis, after everyone is mostly aware of it, but right before the CDC officially declares it as such. My gym has a set of five arc trainers — think elliptical machines, but not — and I pop in for a quick workout on my lunch break. There are two women at each end of the row, so I settle on the machine between them, leaving an empty machine between us on either side. Even without social distancing, taking the machine right next to someone when others are free is just weird.

An important note: I suffer from Tourette’s Syndrome, and one of my — currently unfortunate — tics is a sharp exhalation which could be taken as a cough, if you squint, and pretty constant sniffling. These tics get a bit more aggressive when I’m under stress, such as during intense cardio.

So, there I am, about ten minutes into my sweat, just blissfully watching Netflix on my tablet and getting my workout in, when I notice from the corner of my eye that the woman on my right is looking at me, her lips are moving, and she’s giving me the evil eye. I take my right earpiece out.

Me: “Sorry, what? Were you talking to me? I had my headphones in.”

Woman #1: “You need to leave.”

Me: “Sorry?”

Woman #1: “You need to leave if you’re sick. You’re coughing and sniffling and I’m not comfortable with you being here.”

Me: “Oh! Sorry, no, I’m not sick. I have Tourette’s. That’s not a cough; it’s just a really sharp breathing out and sniffling. Those are my tics.”

Woman #1: “No, you’re sick, and you’re touching your face and the equipment, and you need to go.”

Me: “Um… No. I told you, it’s not symptoms; it’s just my Tourette’s. It’s fine. I’m going back to my show now.”

With that, I put my earpiece back in and resume my workout. I can tell the woman is still talking, but I ignore her and keep at it. A few minutes later, she gets off her machine and walks over to the woman on my left. They talk for a couple of minutes, and [Woman #1] walks off to the other side of the cardio area. I figure that is the end of it.

But then, I realize that [Woman #2] is doing the same thing: glaring at me and talking. Already knowing I am going to regret it, I take my left earpiece out.

Me: “Sorry? Couldn’t hear you. Headset.”

Woman #2: “I know you say you have Tourette’s, but how do I know that?”

Me: “Um… why would I lie about that?”

Woman #2: “You could be a vector for the disease! I’m not comfortable with you being here, and you need to leave.”

Me: “Okay, but again, I’m not. I have Tourette’s. I’m just trying to get a workout in. I’m sorry you’re not comfortable, but honestly, that sounds like a you problem.”

Woman #2: “Well, I just think you need to leave if you’re going to be sweating and touching your face and touching the equipment!”

Me: “Okay, noted, but I’m not leaving. I’m going to finish my workout now. Please leave me alone.”

Woman #2: “Well, then, I’m going to leave, and I’m going to talk to the manager so they know why I’m leaving!”

Me: “You do that.”

I proceeded to put my earpiece back in. [Woman #2] stopped her workout and went across the room to join [Woman #1] — it’s worth noting that neither woman bothered to wipe down the equipment they were using, either — where they continued to shoot me dirty looks and talk among themselves.

I finished my workout, showered, and went to leave. Both women were still there, and I could see [Woman #2] continuing to glare when she realized I was still there. Fed up, I stopped at the front desk and asked for the manager. Fortunately, the manager there knew me well enough by sight and presence to know about my Tourette’s. Unfortunately, they weren’t available at the moment to talk, but I explained the situation to the desk worker and mentioned that the women would probably complain about me later. He promised to pass it along to the manager and told me I wasn’t doing anything wrong.

I admit, in a moment of childish pique, I did look over at [Woman #2] and give a cheerful finger-wave before I left.

Seriously, I get that our current health situation is serious, but you don’t know someone’s health condition better than they do. At least these two didn’t claim to be nurses, unlike the first time it happened.

Tic-ing Along Nicely Until You Came Along

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Taxing Taxing, Part 8

, , , , , | Right | September 25, 2020

I work in collections for a company that provides equipment finance to other businesses. One morning, I receive the following call.

Me: “Good morning, [Company]. How may I help you?”

Customer: “I’m the accounts manager at [Business] and you’ve charged too much on our rentals!”

Me: “I’m sorry about that. Let me look up your account and see what’s happened.”

I pull up the customer’s details, but the only charges on there are their rentals, which match their documents.

Me: “Can you confirm how much has been charged?”

Customer: “£240! My rentals should be £200!”

In the UK, most goods and services are subject to a 20% tax. It’s common for the net amount to be shown on rental documents and business invoices.

Me: “The amount on your documents doesn’t include the VAT, so this is where the extra amount has come from.”

Customer: “I don’t want to pay it!”

Me: “As this is a lease agreement, I’m afraid it is subject to VAT.”

Customer: “I’m not happy! Who said you could charge me this?”

Me: “The government?”

Customer: “Well, until you send them round to speak to me, I’m not paying it!” *Hangs up*

Me: “I’ll get right on that.”

Taxing Taxing, Part 7
Taxing Taxing, Part 6
Taxing Taxing, Part 5
Taxing Taxing, Part 4
Taxing Taxing, Part 3

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You Try To Do Something Nice…

, , , , | Right | September 24, 2020

I work at a retail store for a major telecom company in the UK. We sell both prepaid sims and contracts, and we are not commission-based. Our goal is usually to ensure that customers get the best value for their money. A lot of customers feel, however, that contract sims equal money stealing, despite the fact that direct debit standards placed by the Financial Conduct Authority and OFCOM mean that I would literally lose my job if I tried that.

I had the cream of the crop today, though.

An old lady wants to top up her phone, so we sit down and she gives me her number. The moment I enter her number to top up her account, her top-up history loads up.

Me: “I notice you’ve topped up £10 thrice in the past month with us. That’s a lot of money. What do you use your phone for?”

Customer: “Just calling and texting.”

Me: “Well, you’re clearly calling and texting a lot. There are contracts from £7 a month that would give you unlimited texts and calls; it would be far cheaper for you.”

Customer: *Shaking her head angrily* “NO DIRECT DEBITS! I ONLY PAY FOR WHAT I USE THE PHONE FOR! I don’t use the phone for Internet.”

Me: “You’ll still be paying us for what you use the phone for, but you’re saving at least a quarter of your bill every month. This plan doesn’t include Internet. I wouldn’t offer Internet based on your phone, anyway.”

I motion to her tiny button phone. She snatches her purse from the table.

Customer: “I only top up once every few months. Your system is lying.”

Me: “…”

Customer: “All I want is a £10 top-up! Your money-grabbing schemes will never work on me!”

I top up the account with a shrug.

Me: “Sure. See you in ten days.”

She glared at me as she left the shop. But I bet I’ll see her again in a week and we’re going to have the exact conversation again.

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You Could Try Being Patient For A Change

, , , , , | Right | September 24, 2020

I work at a fast food restaurant. We have been open for five minutes, and we often don’t have £5 or £10 notes early in the mornings. A customer comes by and orders a small item for her grandson. She’s really rude through the whole transaction, belittling me and just being all-round unpleasant. Finally, she gives me a £20 note for a £3 item.

Me: “I’m really sorry. Do you have anything smaller?” 

Customer: *Rolls eyes* “How do you not have change when you just opened?”

Me: “I’m sorry. I do have change for it; it’s just going to have to be in pound coins if that’s okay with you.”

Customer: “No, that’s not okay! That’s ridiculous; you just opened! How do you not have change?!”

Me: “I’m really sorry. They don’t give us those notes when we open; it’s just something we accumulate through the day. I can see if I can exchange some change for it if you’d like?”

Customer: “No! That’s ridiculous! I just want my order! Give me my change in notes and my order!”

Me: “I’m really sorry, but I don’t have notes. It’ll have to be in change.”

Customer: “Fine! But this is a joke! I shouldn’t have to deal with this!”

She throws the note down, and I count her change and hand it to her. I grab her order and put it in a bag instead of on a tray, as it’s only a single item and we run out of trays quickly.

Customer: “Why have you given me a bag? I’m not taking out; I’m eating in!”

Me: “Sorry, I can get you a tray. We don’t usually give trays for smaller items, but I’ll grab you one.”

Customer: “No! I’ll take the bag. This is ridiculous!”

I just give her a slight smile and ignore her, as I don’t trust that I won’t say something nasty to her, and wait for her to walk away.

Customer: “Well? Aren’t you going to thank me?”

Me: “Well, what the F*** do I have to thank you for?!”

Needless to say, she walked off and I was so satisfied. She never reported me. My manager only found out a week later and agreed that the customer was an a**.

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